Making Progress

Today I'm home alone...unless you consider that I have two little cat buddies with me. Mike was home yesterday because of the ice. He drives a heavy truck with studded snow tires, and so he bravely (or foolishly, depending on how you look at it ) went to work today. We were told yesterday that the roads were better in the valley. Since I was thinking going to the grocery store, I asked him to call me with the road report. Within about 10 minutes he was calling with the sound of panic in his voice: "DON'T EVEN THINK ABOUT GOING OUT." Well...as I said, it was too late not think about it, but I'm probably safe...even with the thinking. But, okay. It's pretty easy to discourage me from going to the grocery store.

Yesterday morning it was foggy and dark. The sun came out in the afternoon, and wow! The icy landscape really sparkled. Donning my cool and stylish Yaktrax, I went out for a second time with my macro lens to take some pictures. Sadly, my battery ran dead after just three shots. But to say more about the Yaktrax...what a great device.

Did I mention how stylish they are? Hey! They're for ice walking, so cut a girl some slack. Mine are actually a little less formidable than the ones in the pictures, but that's the basic idea. Anyway...they allow me to get out of the house safely. And here are a couple of pictures from that second trek out.

We have just as much ice this morning, and so I'll probably try to get out again today if I can.

The rest of the day yesterday was spent sewing. I have eight blocks and 16 of 20 snowflakes quilted with the metallic thread now. Just the four corner blocks are left, and I'm thinking I can get them finished today. I'm going so much faster with the ruler template now, and I'm really liking it. My lines aren't perfect, but they're pretty darned close. Also today I'm going to try to get some housework done. Having Mike here has been a big distraction, although I can't really say why. I think I just pause to chat with him more often when he's here, and it makes it hard to stick to the task at hand.

The kitties are doing a little better every day. Maggie was out of her room almost all afternoon yesterday. She has a little retreat under the couch where she can see all the goings-on without having to endure any sneak attacks. Smitty sits and watches her. He seems to get his back up first thing in the morning when he first lays eyes on her, as if to say, "What? Are you still here???!!" This morning I shook the squirt bottle of water in his face, and he simmered down immediately. He doesn't mind getting soaking wet in the rain, but he absolutely hates the squirt bottle.

So a little while ago, I went into her room to check on her and fill her food bowl. Before opening the door, I shook the bottle in his face again. He sat politely just outside and she was just inside and saw him. She actually took a few steps toward him before retreating behind a door where they could both watch one another. Nobody growled or snarled, so that was a good sign. Smitty always takes a long morning nap in his He Man Woman Hater's Clubhouse, and so while he's in there, we've been letting her roam the house. We shut his door from the downstairs so that we can control their access to one another and check occasionally to see if he's come out. When he comes out, they sit in the position in that picture. We're making progress, and that's what counts.

Last week I broke down and purchased the wearable Fitbit Flex to go with the app on my phone. The phone was working fine, but only if I carried it with me at all times, and that was a pain. I got the wrist band and monitored my steps for a week. Mike and I had the David Letterman discussion of "Is it anything?" Was I doing anything aside from counting my steps? And to what end?

After a brief Facebook exchange with a friend, I decided to set an actual goal of walking 10,000 steps per day, but I'm afraid my daily activities were going to fall far short of that goal. Yesterday I decided I'd try walking three 10-minute bursts on the treadmill. Here's the thing about dedicated exercise: It bores the living sh*t out of me. You know I tried doing 30-minute sessions last year and I just about killed myself with boredom. Besides, it caused my knee to get inflamed again, and that is a big problem. Ten minutes is much more doable, and so I did it three times yesterday. Combined with my regular activities, it only got me up to about 8,500 steps. Not bad, but I've decided I can probably force myself to do an additional 10-minute burst, for a total of four per day. Today, I'll give it a try. My Facebook friend tells me it's a rule that I have to raise my arms in a "Touchdown!" signal when I reach my goal. Maybe today...Wish me luck. 

12 comments from clever and witty friends:

liniecat said...

I suspect Maggie once may have had to chomp wherever and whenever she found food available, so she's bound to eat whatever she can get, on the off chance there's no more available for days, or that Smitty eats it first!
Once she's more confident that your going to keep on feeding her, her eating habit may well relax to normal.
Unless she's trying to lay on the weight so Smitty doesn't find her attractive - she may not want more of 'that' kind of attention lol
It sounds though as if your doing really well to be honest.
Its Smittys pad, no pun intended lol so he's bound to remind Maggies hes King pin each morning but once he thinks shes understood that, chances are they will even out the bossy bouts and agree to either differ or play.
Your so right about exercise being boring - would an audio book to listen to improve things? No? Nor for me! Would the extra steps count if you waggle your feet when sat sitting, like foot foot wagging along to imaginary music?
Am trying to think laterally - let me know if it works please!!

Suzanne Ramsay said...

Keep it up and it might work for you. I seem to get results even when I slow down. I've put Netflix on and a half hour flies by. I don't allow myself to watch whatever series I'm watching unless I'm on the treadmill. If going slower causes less pain I hope that might work for you. My so saw a posting on YouTube by a man who lost a lot of weight using Netflix. That was encouraging for me. I'm going to start watching qnntv on there too. I hope you find what encourages you.

Sarah said...

Congrats on the new fitbit. I adore my FB Charge! BTW - you'll never catch me on a mechanical exercise machine...just doesn't do it for me. I wanna walk "somewhere and back" and I want to listen to a book while I get there. I sometimes walk a little more to hear more book. Your Yaktrax look much more formidable than mine. I was thinking the chains couldn't be squished over time like my coils but those "daggers" should really keep you safe and I would hate to use those on our sidewalks/streets. Good luck with the fitbit!

Kate said...

Beautiful ice images. That's about the only good thing about icing in the winter, it certainly is photogenic. Hope Smgitty and Maggie are getting use to the new kitty world order.

JLVerde said...

Those sneaker chains look fabulous. I have a goal to walk 2016 miles this year so I have to get out in all kinds of weather (too clumsy for a treadmill). I don't mind the cold but if it's slippery forget it. Are the shoe chains uncomfortable to walk in for long stretches?

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I don't have a Fitbit, but I do make sure I get up and move at least every half hour. I know how many rotation around the house and how many times up/down the stairs makes a mile - and if weather is good (and we've had way better weather than you) I get at least one if not two walks in outside for another mile.

Lyndsey said...

Great to hear Maggie and Smitty are able to be in the same room as each other without growling too much. It really is going very well.

I have a jawbone band rather than a fitbit but it does the same thing. I've been using it for 18 months and it does work well and because it's on your wrist counts every step. I try to do 1100 steps a day and when at home it's very doable but work days I do slight less. The only problem I've found with counting steps is over the time my stride has lengthened as I've got fitter so I have to walk further distance to get the steps. Jawbone send weekly updates on how I've done and tell me my daily average steps and sleep for the week. So long a my daily average for the week hits my goal I'm happy.

Cath said...

Hello Barbara....first off, you must know that I haven't been past Cat Patches for awhile so I was a bit confused to see another kitty there...when I realised Gracie was gone I had to go backtracking to see what I missed...so sorry to hear that she has passed over to the rainbow side but I can totally see your point to let her go even though it would have been a hard decision for both you and Mike. She was such a pretty kitty and her appearance from time to time on your blog will be missed. On the flipside, I look forward to getting to know Maggie! Now off to read all the things I have missed like the snow(wo)man quilt that you finished stitching.

SJSM said...

You have made LOTS of progress! Can't wait to see your quilt when you can take pictures. The ice scenes are incredibly beautiful. Living in a non snow climate as an adult, I haven't seen that kind of icing. As I child, I remember times of ice covering everything. It was awe inspiring to see when you first woke and looked outside, especially if the sun was brightly shining. Being a kid, I didn't have to deal with transversing the ice to get to work, the store or anywhere else. Today, I will look at your photos and just enjoy their beauty and not think of the treacherous navigation.

It is with a sigh of relief, to hear the kitties are doing better. Good to know you didn't have to go all the way back to ground zero with them. Nice to read the optimism in your post reagarding the two.

Dana Gaffney said...

Driving on ice sounds like no fun at all, especially going down a mountain, stay home and enjoy the kittys. Small steps for those two but it's getting better, I like the part about her taking a couple of steps towards him, she's willing to be friends.

quiltzyx said...

Scary ice driving - yikes! I've managed to avoid that in my life so far.
Sounds like you're making great progress with the Snow Ladies. Have they started to cheer you on a little now?
Good for Maggie, making a couple steps forward. And for Smitty, keeping his little pink nose out of trouble!

Brown Family said...

We got FitBit's for Christmas. We have been mall walking to improve out health. Or so we hope. After a week I am so sore and stiff that it hurts to move. We are only getting in 5000 steps a day or two miles. I know that is not much, but it is a start. I wanted it to monitor my sleep habits, too. I know that I rouse enough to see the clock almost every hour. This tells me that I am restless more that waking up. Tuesday night I has 22 times of restlessness and one awake time for a total of 43 min. out of a 6 and a half hour night.